It’s midnight, and Anant Agarwal is still at his computer. He’s in an online discussion forum, talking about basic circuit design with students around the world — a group that includes high schoolers, undergraduates, mid-career professionals and at least one octogenarian retiree.
A decade ago, MIT broke ground with its OpenCourseWare initiative, which made MIT course materials, such as syllabi and lecture notes, publicly accessible. But over the last five years, MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif has led an effort to move the complete MIT classroom experience online, with video lectures, homework assignments, lab work — and a grade at the end.
That project, called MITx, launched late last year. On March 16, Reif announced that Agarwal would step down as CSAIL director in order to lead MIT’s Open Learning Enterprise, which will oversee MITx’s development.